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Essential Coronavirus Post-Apocalypse Book Reviews

[dropcap]C[/dropcap]oronavirus and 2020 in general is making many of us question whether we’re living through the apocalypse. So, just to check, we’ve compiled a list of our own book reviews of stories that may depict what our future could look like

The end is near! 2020 has turned into The Year of the Apocalypse and, while it isn’t as different from what we’ve read in literature as we’d like it to be.We are currently living through a global pandemic, which is enough on its own. Add to that potential wars between China and India, The KoreasEthiopia and Egypt and Donald Trump’s ego, and things are looking pretty grim. And there’s truly no shortage of dystopian worlds imagined in books throughout time. Here are some of our favourites:

Nineteen Eighty-Four

apocalypse book reviews - George Orwell 1984

Written by George Orwell back in 1949, this dystopian masterpiece was obviously written as a critique of the issues of its time, but many of its themes are certainly applicable more than 70 years later. In Oceania, mass surveillance and propaganda are specifically relevant to the challenges that we face with mobile technology and social media today. Not to mention, with the world being led by the likes of Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping and Kim Jong-Un, among many other powerful men with  totalitarian tendencies, the critique on totalitarianism is specifically useful if we’re going to keep on our toes and prevent this dystopia from coming to life. Nineteen Eighty-Four was written for a different time, but it is truly a timeless masterpiece and the fact that its themes are still relevant today is testament to that.

Essential Millennial rating: 5 out of 5 avocados

apocalypse book Reviews rating

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow

Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow - book review

If you’ve read Yuval Noah Harari’s Sapiens, you will understand that his ability to bring facts together and create the perfect narrative is unparalleled. However, unlike Sapiens, Homo Deus focuses more on mankind’s evolutionary history and uses it as a springboard to tell the story of our future. And above all of this he discusses several complex, yet incredibly important, moral issues that we are going to have to face in the years to come. This best-selling author produces a compelling tale that ultimately shows the path we could take as we slowly turn from humans into gods. Considering how rapidly technology is advancing and how little attention we’re paying to the consequences of it, this is another must-read.

Essential Millennial rating: 4 out of 5 avocados

apocalypse book Reviews rating

The Driver in the Driverless Car: How Our Technology Choices Will Create the Future

The Driver in the Driverless Car: How Our Technology Choices Will Create the Future

Another non-fiction forward-looking story. Vivek Wadhwa comprehensively explores many emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, DNA profile designer diets, self-driving cars and assesses the possible applications for things like education, healthcare and our jobs. Throughout the book, he takes you through what he imagines the world will look like in the very near future. His observations are incredibly exciting and will restore your faith in mankind’s potential ability to power through the challenges ahead.

Essential Millennial rating: 4 out of 5 avocados

apocalypse book Reviews rating

World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War

Apocalypse book reviews - WWZ

Maybe zombies aren’t exactly realistic… but we have seen how the outbreak of a deadly virus shuts the world down and how a few crazies are threats to our very lives, so that would make the legendary post-apocalytic best-seller seem pretty realistic wouldn’t it? World War Z is an account of “zombie journalist”, Max Brooks, interviewing survivors of a Zombie plague that had hit the world 20 years earlier. It’s a fantastic critique on isolationism, government ineptitude and survivalism. It set a benchmark for all zombie-themed literature and moves that followed it publishing almost 15 years ago.

Essential Millennial rating: 4.5 out of 5 avocados

apocalypse book Reviews rating

The Road

The Road Cormac McCathy

My personal favourite on this list, Cormac McCarthy’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel bring to life the ugliest future imaginable. Set in a world with a completely ravaged environment, McCarthy gives a firsthand account of a father who’s caught in this barren world with his son, struggling to find food and shelter. Mankind has been truly reduced to a state of nature and there are gangs of cannibals who’ve completely lost their sense of mercy. The story is rather bland and uneventful for the most part, but the details that McCarthy provides in his account of the man’s struggle for survival are what truly makes it superb. It’s a real page-turner in spite of its slow developing plot line, but even its worst passages are sheer literary brilliance.

Essential Millennial rating: 5 out of 5 avocados 

apocalypse book Reviews rating

Film Bonus: The Matrix

The Matrix Poster.jpg

If you aren’t feeling up to reading a post-apocalyptic story and would rather watch something, I cannot think if a film that better imagines such a world than the Matrix. We are now approaching a moment where a simulated world will no longer be distinguishable from reality and where Artificially Intelligent machines will be smarter than people. In the event that the machines take over, because they no longer need us, the Matrix depicts what our reality will be incredibly well. The hypothesis of a simulated reality where conscious minds that may or may not know that they live inside a simulation isn’t too far-fetched these days and the theory has long-since outlived the hype around the Matrix, featuring the internet’s number one bae, Keanu Reeves. If you haven’t watched it already or you’re feeling bored, put it on and take a look at how much closer we are to the world depicted in this movie which is now more than 20 years old.

Essential Millennial rating: 5 out of 5 avocados

apocalypse book Review rating


So there you have it, apocalypse book reviews of stories will set your imagination alight and perhaps even make you feel a little better about the world as it is… At least things don’t look so bad… yet




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